The Tampon Tree

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Below is our first anonymous post from a man who would like to be known as Voldemort.

So it’s the late 70s, I’m in Santa Cruz, my mind is being blown open by classes in dreams, anthropology, history and literature, I’m reading SONS AND LOVERS and just lost in it, and I’m crazy wild naive heart-blasted-open in love with a beautiful young opera singer who is a communist and out to change the world, on top of all this I am on drugs, and I go wandering out into the spring redwoods and meadows carrying my book, and I come upon this tree, this huge waving dark green oak, only……. there’s all these ornaments on it, hundreds of white ornaments….. I stop dead in my tracks, the grasses rustle around my feet, the tree waves…. .My fizzing burning bubbling drug-drenched brain howls, “Who the fuk would decorate a tree in the middle of nowhere?  In the middle of meadows and forests?  Is it some kind of pagan ritual tree?”  I look for bones, feathers or sage at its roots–nothing.  Everything is dead quiet and yet throbbing and shimmering and ALIVE and the tree bends softly in the breeze….. and I suddenly realize….. THEY’RE TAMPONS, some madman or madwoman, has spent hours and days 40 feet off the ground tying countless tampons to a tree, and since then it has rained and, as if the rain were the blood of the sky, the tampons have all sprung open, and they are puffy white sky-blood flowers, and…..I can’t articulate it, I have no words for it, my brain is thrumming like a bee against a window, and then….. I GET IT,  IT IS ART, IT IS A WORK OF ART, and this wild pulsing living thing that has been named ART and has been living in some quiet cave of dim awareness in my love-sick mind, it wakes up and bursts into flames, and the flames lite my breath and bones.  The sun shines, the tampon flowers bob and dip, hummingbirds approach them and fly away, this thing called ART, it has leaped the fences that contain how I see the world, and now it burns beyond them, it is a living language all its own….and for the first time ever I can hear the language, I can begin to understand it………….and I have been trying to speak it ever since


Painting by NickMears

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